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Planning for Pandemics Critical to Workforce Safety and Government Continuity

June 16, 2009 (WASHINGTON) – Today, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a report on protection of federal employees during a flu pandemic entitled Influenza Pandemic: Increased Agency Accountability Could Help Protect Federal Employees Serving the Public in the Event of a Pandemic. The report finds that a pandemic influenza outbreak has the potential to endanger a significant percentage of essential personnel from the federal workforce for weeks or months. Many aspects of a pandemic and its consequences can be anticipated and mitigated through planning. Federal agencies must prepare pandemic response plans and worker protection strategies to ensure an adequate workforce throughout a pandemic, as well as protection for agency employees serving the American public.

Chairman Thompson released the following statement with the release of the report:

“We must ensure that the government functions efficiently and effectively during a pandemic. This means completing and implementing our plans now, and ensuring that our Federal employees have the equipment, medicines and clear guidance they need to be safe and healthy."

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Please contact Dena Graziano or Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978

Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS)

Rep. Bennie G. Thompson

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